The rules surrounding Building Control, whether for extensions or new building and change of use, are complex. Flaxton, because of the extent of the designated Conservation Area and the Common Land, has special requirements which have to be considered when development is proposed.

When applications for development in the Conservation Area are considered, particular regard is given to whether or not the proposal will significantly affect or change the character or appearance of the surrounding area. Attention is given to building design, materials, type and size of windows, height, proportion and what could be called the ‘architectural vernacular’.

As a general rule, if there is not already a building on a piece of land, planning permission will be required. In some cases where a building already exists extending it or erecting a new building may not need planning permission. However the best advice if any development is proposed is to consult with the Development Control staff at Ryedale District Council. This can prevent the expense in terms of time and money in having to undo work should planning permission not be obtained. It is advised to fill in the form ‘FT where any changes are being considered, especially within the Conservation Area. The Planning Officer will, from the information on this form, be able to inform you if planning approval is required without the expense of submitting a full application with the required fee.

If a change of use is being proposed, for instance converting a barn to living accommodation within the Conservation Area, then planning permission should be obtained. Since 1992 there have been new additional planning controls applying to demolition of dwelling houses or buildings adjoining a dwelling house (or an agricultural building) and prior notice must be given to the appropriate department before proceeding.

As a general rule buildings within the Conservation Area cannot be demolished without permission. However there are exceptions to this rule with criteria based on volumetric considerations and decisions in such cases need the input of the professional planning and legal staff of the local planning authority.

Planning applications should be accompanied by:

  1. A site location plan of not less than 1:2500 scale.
  2. Details, plans and sections of not less than 1:100 scale.
  3. A block plan of the site and proposal at 1:200 scale.
  4. The correct fee.
  5. Signed certification relative to ownership of the land involved.

The District Council is required to make a decision on the application within eight weeks and during this time has to carry out a number of consultations with the Parish Council, Highways Department and immediate neighbours of the site. Any person can submit comments on any planning application but, under the terms of the Access to Information Act, all such letters are available for inspection and copying by the applicant or any other member of the public.

Very rarely will a decision be deferred beyond the eight week period. Exceptions would be in sensitive developments, where a number of buildings are involved, which require site meetings and public notices. Sensitive applications include those in Conservation Areas or relating to a listed building.

Enforcement of Planning Control

Planning Inspectors are employed by the District Council to check on developments as they progress and to follow up complaints. In this way most problems can be solved at an early stage but the District Council can serve enforcement notices on owners or occupiers. This may be brought about by the following:-

* development without permission.

* building not in accordance with approved plans.

* planning conditions not being observed.

The District Council can serve an Enforcement Notice or a Breach of Conditions Notice which will describe what is wrong and what must be done to put it right. Prosecution will only follow if the requirements of the notice are not carried out. However, if any unauthorised development is carried out on a Listed building, the District Council can initiate prosecution proceedings immediately. This restriction on Listed buildings also applies to any building or structure within its curtilage so that consent is required for demolition or changes to outbuildings.

Owners of Listed buildings have a responsibility to maintain them. If the building should be considered to be in danger through neglect, the District Council has powers to carry out repairs and recover the cost from the owner. As a last resort the District Council may make a compulsory purchase of the property.

Limits of Permitted Development

In the Local Plan for Ryedale, many villages have been allocated strict boundaries outside which development and/or building will be strictly controlled. Flaxton is one of the villages with this restriction and the boundaries of the area involved are shown on Sheet 4A. It should be noted that this area overlaps with both that of the Conservation Area and that of the Greens or Common Land. It is therefore important to check with the District Council Planning Department to prevent difficulties and problems with planning applications. A larger scale version of the map shown below is available on loan from the Clerk to the Council if required. The boundary of the development limits is subject to possible change as the result of Public Enquiry and it is advisable to check on the latest position with the local planning authority.

Diagram showing limits of permitted development in Flaxton